The Girl from the Paradise Ballroom

By: Alison Love (click here to learn more about author)

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The Girl from the Paradise Ballroom is the enrapturing tale of Italian Americans in New York right before the start of World War II. Antonio is a struggling Italian immigrant, who helps his dad sell cigarettes out of a kiosk, but his real passion is singing. At night, he often sings in the cities lesser known nightclubs and this is where he meets Olivia. Olivia has been working as a “dance partner” in nightclubs across the city.

After a chance meeting in the alley behind the Paradise Ballroom, Antonio and Olivia don’t cross each other’s paths again until years later when Olivia’s husband becomes Antonio’s patron.

The Girl from the Paradise Ballroom is an emotional tale of how it was to be Italian when the country was feared and seen as a threat in the US. The characters are well written and while you don’t necessarily fall in love with them, you want to see what happens to them in the end. The one complaint I had is the ending was kind of abrupt. Everyone just kind of all of the sudden gets what they want. In a book set in war time, there are going to be some tragedies.

I received a free copy of the book from Blogging for Books in exchange for this honest review.


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